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Paris - Montparnasse: Place Denfert-Rochereau - Le Lion de Belfort

Le Lion de Belfort (The Lion of Belfort) is a hammered copy of the pink sandstone Lion erected in Belfort, France. Self-financed and sculpted by Frédéric-Auguste Bartholdi, the architect of the Statue of Liberty, from 1872 to 1879, the original 22-meter long Lion de Belfort symbolizes the heroic resistance of Belfort during a 103 days long Prussian assault, from December 1870 to February 1871 during the Franco-Prussian War. The city was protected from 40,000 Prussians by just 17,000 men (only 3,500 were from the military). Instead of facing Prussia to the east as was intended, it was turned the other way because of German protests. The replica was installed in Place Denfer-Rochereau in 1880, and restored in 2001. Place Denfert-Rochereau, previously known as Place d'Enfer, located in the XIVe arrondissement in the Montparnasse area and situated at the intersection of boulevards Raspail, Arago and Saint-Jacques, and avenues René Coty, Général Leclerc, Denfert-Rochereau and rue Froidevaux, is named after Colonel Pierre Philippe Denfert-Rochereau, French commander during the Siege of Belfort.

 

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Taken on September 9, 2007